Reimagining Place: New Voices from the Midwest

Room 2102A, Kansas City Convention Center, Street Level
Thursday, February 8, 2024
10:35 am to 11:50 am


As “fly-over country,” the Midwest is imagined as corn fields and snow drifts, not the nexus of vibrant, innovative poetry. This diverse group of BIPOC poets from Chicago, Lincoln, Minneapolis, and Onigamiising will interrogate Midwestern stereotypes by breaking boundaries of language, image, and form. As Indigenous, Queer, immigrant, Black, nonbinary, and multinational writers, they will reimagine the concepts of place, space, and the intersectional landscapes that reside in us all.

Outline & Supplemental Documents

Event Outline: Event_Outline_Re-imagining_Place-_New_Voices_from_the_Midwest.pdf



Kathryn Kysar is the author of two books of poetry, Dark Lake and Pretend the World, and she edited Riding Shotgun: Women Write About Their Mothers. A previous AWP board member, Kysar is the director of the creative writing program at Anoka-Ramsey Community College in Minneapolis.

April Gibson is a Black poet, writer, and professor whose work appears in The Kenyon Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, Prairie Schooner, and elsewhere. Her forthcoming book of poetry will be published by Amistad Press/Harper Collins in 2024. April teaches English at Malcolm X College in Chicago.

Ashley E. Wynter lives in Minneapolis where she participated in a regional Cave Canem workshop. She won first place in the fifty-third New Millennium Award for Poetry and her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in West Trade Review and Water~Stone Review. Wynter is editor at Copper Canyon Press.

Halee Kirkwood is a poet and descendant of the Fond Du Lac Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe. They are a 2023–25 Jerome Hill Artist Fellow, an inaugural In-Na-Po fellow, and were a 2019–20 Loft Mentor Series Fellow. Their work has been published in Poetry Magazine, Ecotone, Poem-A-Day, and others.

Chinua Ezenwa-Ohaeto lives in Lincoln, Nebraska where he is pursuing his PhD in English at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a focus on creative writing (poetry). His works have appeared in Isele Magazine, AFREADA, Poet Lore, Massachusetts Review, Frontier Poetry, Palette Poetry, and elsewhere.


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center